And just like that, we are at the end of 2021. 

This year wasn’t the year that I had prepared for when I considered running for president-elect. No one could see what was going to happen in 2020, and we certainly did not think we would still be in the pandemic at the end of 2021. Well, at least this overly optimistic person did not. Despite the past two years not developing to be all that we had hoped, we have proved the resiliency of our Charleston chapter and the community we love. Together we pivoted and created opportunities for professional development outside of our norm. You all kept showing up for events, even when the Zoom fatigue was next-level. And for this, the board and I are forever grateful.

As we go into the New Year, I am excited for not only the opportunity to be back in person for events but to have the opportunity to take what we learned in the past year to grow. We recognize that one of the many benefits of being a member of the Charleston American Marketing Association is the opportunity to network and gather together. We are excitedly working on a new calendar of events full of opportunities to learn, grow and engage in our community.

One of our highlights this year was the highly successful Spark! Awards. After having to take a year off to do a virtual event, it was wonderful to be amongst our peers and celebrate our marketing community in person with dancing, drinks, and seeing new and familiar faces. We have exciting plans for the 2022 Spark! Awards and our annual Marketing Bootcamp coming up in a few months. Not to leave out our signature programming and new opportunities to mix and mingle. Let’s just say, I am exhilarated, proud, and hopeful for all the things to come.

I want to take a moment to thank my fellow board members and volunteers for their dedication and hard work throughout this past year. Some of you started during the pandemic and quickly jumped in headfirst. All of us were forced to evolve and think outside the box to deliver programming that mattered. It has been one of the greatest honors of my life to work beside you, and as you know, are all marketing superheroes in my book.

2022, we are coming in hot and hope you are ready. Thank you for your continued support and we look forward to seeing you at an event soon. Happy New Year! 🎉

Stephanie Barrow
President, Charleston AMA

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